Flooding Update - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:46 pm on 25th February 2020.

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Photo of Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park The Minister of State, Department for International Development, The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Minister of State 3:46 pm, 25th February 2020

I thank the noble Lord for his comment. I and the Government are clear that we should not build homes in areas at risk of flooding. That is not to say that there cannot be any building on flood plains. The point was made earlier—I think by my colleague—that a number of important places, not least London, are built on flood plains, so we cannot have a blanket ban. What we can do is have a default position that says, “No building in areas at risk, where there is an alternative”. Where homes are built in areas that are at risk, they should not be built in such a way that makes it hard for their owners to secure insurance. If the new owner of a new home built in an at-risk area is unable to secure insurance through an ordinary route, that, I suggest, is a symptom of planning failure.